Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Impromptu guzzling, Tasmanian Devils and ungrateful rockabilly girls!

I'll summarise the first half of last weekend and then get to its undoubted highlight. I went down my local in Letchworth on Thursday in my hat. The evening began sensibly enough and then I bumped into Sammie from La Concha and some of her staff, immediately switching from real ale to Pinot Grigio. One bottle in and I was bombarded with demands to explain why I wouldn't let everyone try my hat on (I consider it to be an item of clothing and wouldn't let people try my shoes on either) before someone asked me what I did for a living. I replied honestly and then he said "tell me a joke then". he didn't ask. He instructed. I explained I wasn't at work. He asked why that made a difference. I asked him what he did for a living. He said he did car rentals. I asked him to rent me a car. He told me he wasn't at work. I was having a battle of wits with an unarmed man so decided to bring myself down to his level by getting another bottle of PG. By the end of the night we were firm friends. I don't remember what time I left.

On Friday I went round to my Dad's to watch Norwich City v Nottingham Forest. The latter (my team) lost 2-1 and are now doubts even to make the Championship play-offs and another season in relative obscurity beckons. I had a walk down The Tavern for a couple of late ones to cheer myself up. When I walked in I was greeted by bar staff chuckling to themselves and asking me if I had had a "Good time" the night before . Apparently it had taken them a good three quarters of an hour to get me and my new best friend out of there. I settled into a round with Bob (landlord) and Tom (his son) and leisurely quaffed Youngs ale (only £2.40! A bargain!) until towards the end of the night when I was accosted by some late entries to the pub who I am the barest of acquaintances with. I was refused a repeat of Thursday's antics so retired to my flat nursing a bottle of Rose wine and in the company of said latterday rowdies. They were like Tasmanian Devils once in domesticity and it took me a good hour to get rid of them. I began to know how the bar staff felt.

Your average guest at Casa Edwards
Saturday night saw me remembering I worked for a living and I drove down to Forest Hill to do a great comedy show that I play all too rarely. It's in a pub called The Hob and is one of South London's longest running shows. A small(ish) audience were treated to compering female double act "Chambers & Nettleton" who warmed them up beautifully for the opening act who went on and proceeded to talk for twenty minutes (in graphic detail) about his sex holiday to Thailand. It was incredibly graphic but intelligently self-deprecating and the audience were left open mouthed by the denouement to his turn, as were the other acts. I went on second, safe in the knowledge that there really was nothing I could say that could possibly shock anybody. I had a great time. I wish he could open all of my gigs.

...And so to Sunday and the day of The London Marathon, which I sensibly slept through. I had been invited to "Help Japan", an all-day rockabilly & psychobilly benefit gig at Dingwalls in Camden. Obviously I asked partner-in-crime and general drinking buddy Steve along. Leaving the quite excellent Lisa to oversee his pub for another stretch, we got the train down from Luton and got to Camden for around half two and got stuck in to some Turkish wraps and Galician pork stew for a hefty lunch in preparation for what was sure to be a massive bender. It wasn't. We queued up for forty five minutes only to get in and find the bar so crowded that it was taking a further twenty to get served. The first few bands were all of a muchness and the promise of a score of them by eleven looked unlikely to say the least as endless raffles and kit-changes slowed things up to a snail's pace. Things suddenly started ramping up about 7pm when a lot of the more traditional rockabillies buggered off. This was a double score. On the one hand, the bar emptied sufficiently for us to really get stuck in AND in rapid succession I was treated to Porky's Hot Rockin', King Salami & The Cumberland 3, The Space Cadets, Coffin Nails, Restless and to cap it all off, King Kurt.

King Salami & The Cumberland 3 with special guest idiot in foreground
Various very funny things happened - at one point I nipped outside and a drunk woman asked if she could try my hat on. I said "No". When she asked why not I replied that it might knock the fascinator she was already wearing. She demonstrated her chagrin at this by punching herself in the side of the head. She then staggered off, fell backwards on to the courtyard cobbles and was helped to a seat. about an hour later she was still there. Her friend was treating her for what appeared to be minor concussion. Her friend then did the same thing and we were all treated to a flash of her leopard skin knickers. During the last band a girl next to me was knocked over by a few guys dancing behind her. I offered to help her up. She blamed me for the whole thing, called me some quite unspeakable things and threatened to kick me "in the nuts". She was dragged away by a lovely lady in a stripy top who had seen everything and apologised to me. Bemused, I went back to jumping up and down like a demented old colonial.

Steve thought it would be a good idea to take a photo of the line up so we could remember who was on. The order changed out of all recognition, as did my perception of reality by the end
The gig over, A quick look at the time saw us beyond midnight and with no chance of a tube back to St. Pancras so we started yomping down to Euston in search of a cab, stopping only for takeaway chicken on the way. A taxi procured, we got back to S.P. and got a painfully slow train that didn't get in to Luton until 2am. The (suffering) Lisa had stayed up in the pub and was armed with a Chinese takeaway and a film they both allegedly wanted to watch called "Leap Year". It's actually worse than "Last Of The Airbenders" and kept me up and grumbling until 4am with Lisa chuckling at my constant moaning and Steve (Who slept throughout).

I woke up at 8am on the wrong end of his sofa to a text from my friend Lorie who informed me that my car alarm was going off. I thanked her and told her I planned to do nothing at all about it as it was 8am. I got up about eleven and felt like I'd run the London Marathon, stopping at the drinks points for booze and take away rather than water. It dawned on me that Steve and I had effectively been on our feet for fourteen hours the previous day, standing awkwardly, dancing, yomping or running up and down escalators. It's a miracle I'm here at all, it really is. Spare a thought for Steve though - he did the whole thing in flip flops.

1 comment:

  1. I'll do no such thing. It's no less than he deserves for showing up to a psychobilly gig wearing flip flops.


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